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GoggleEye

In need of some help and advice!!

25 posts in this topic

Hey all. I will be doing a solo fishing trip up to kab on the 17th through the 20th (August) because I can not find anyone to go with and I am sick of waiting for people to commit to fishing trips. So I said screw it and will go solo. I have never been there and I am clueless (and a little worried as I am going alone!). I will be camping on the islands at the designated campsites and fishing as much as I can stay awake. I will be after walleyes and big pike. I will be in a small 14 ft. boat with a 15 hp motor and I am concerned about the wind and weather. Will I be ok with this type of setup and am I wasting my time coming to the kab this time of year? I will be after walleyes and big pike. Should I consider another location or lake? If not, what are some of the "must-haves" for bait and tackle on this lake? I am planning on trolling deep water a lot with cranks and spoons. I will also slip-bobber rig with crawlers and leeches and vertically jig with twister tails and spoons. Any help or advice (fishing or non-fishing) would be extremely appreciated! Thanks.

GoggleEye

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What type of species are you fishing for?

If you are concerned about fishing that big water, you should consider crane or something along the chain that might be easier to get around in your smaller boat.

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The man said he is after Walleye and big pike. Kab is a big body of water and can get rough in a hurry. That being said, I have done real well last couple of weekends using a minnow and spinner rig. Lots of people use 14 foot boats with a small outboard on kab. Just use your head, wear your pfd, carry extra gas and have a portable marine band H.T. in case you get in trouble (they have a range of about 1 1/2 mile or so).

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What size of minnow are you using on that spinner rig? Are you casting and popping it or trolling? Thanks for your reply, it's appreciated.

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I like chubs and fatheads. I guess they are about 2 - 2 1/2 inches long. The livelier the minnow the better. Hook 'em right through the head and troll with them right on the bottom. Once in a while you will snag bottom but hey "if you aint getting bottom you aint catching walleye". Find rocky structure with adjoining mud or sand bottom and then troll the edges in 25-30 ft water. Others talk of pitching 1/4 oz jigs in 8-12 ft of water but not my style of fishing so I can't be of much help to you there.

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Having the marine band portable will be a big comfort, especially with the weather forecasts that they provide. The lake is big, but there are plenty of islands for protection. Use your head and be safe. I am in the same boat as you. We are trying to plan a fall trip but like you, I grow weary of those who can't commit. I guess it will be me and my Chesapeake Bay Retriever in the end. She doesn't complain when we aren't catching fish. Plus she is a strong enough swimmer, if my motor went down, I could tie her to the front and she would get us home grin.gif

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WOW, the three of us need to get together. I HAD a trip planned for the 23-26th of Aug, but now everyone has backed out. Didn;t wanna go bymyself, so I am saving the VACA days. Got a Baby due Oct 9th, so the wife says any trip for me is out now until after then when the Mom-in-law is here helping with the new baby.

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Thanks for all the help and advice all! I am leaving now so I will report back to you as to how I did on this thread. Hopefully I will have a descent report to share. I would be up for another trip up here in the colder months even if this one doesn't go well. If anyone has friends like me and needs some fishing partners for up and coming trips, keep in touch! I may be able to make it up again for some week or long weekend in the fall to chase the eyes and pike. Good luck all!

GoggleEye

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Boy do I enjoy reading these posts. I was just going to read and enjoy until I read Wade's posting stating that he has a baby due the 9th...Congrats. I consider myself sort of an expert when it comes to convincing the wife to let me go fish. I've been begging for years. I've been doing yearly fishing trips the first week of September for years. Once upon a time I too had a baby due October 9th (no kidding) so my plan was to fish and come home sleep for the next few weeks until the baby came. Three days before the trip I went with the wife to the doctor who guaranteed me that the baby wasn't coming for at least a few weeks. Well two days later my youngest was born. Sept 11th in fact. That was one time that I wasn't able to convince my wife to let me go and she hasn't let me forget the fact that I had the nerve to ask if I could still go. Your wife is smart putting the Ka-bosh on you going until after but hey at least you get to go this year and you'll have a new fishing buddy in a few years. wink.gif Congrats again.

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Thanks Pick. If I get to go, great, if not, hey, there is always next year. Ironically, my youngest son (I have two teens with an ex wife) was born Sept 11th, 2002. He is already a fishing buddy, my oldest son who lives with his mom loves to fish as well, and I have taken him to VNP on two occasions when he was visiting me for the summer. Wife number 2 is much more understanding and supportive of my fishing addiction, (thats why I got rid of wife number 1 in the first place) She also enjoys going to VNP herself, although she just enjoys the scenery and the camping as she is not as addicted to fishing as I am.

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Baby's, Baby's, Baby's. I am fearing the day that I have my first little one and that my fishing time will be cut down to almost nothing.....hopefully the woman it is with will be understanding and let me out of the house frequently! Now for the fishing report, I did good and bad. The good being that I hooked into some nice sized fish and the bad being that I did not catch nearly the numbers I was expecting. Biggest walleyes were 27" and 25.5". Biggest Pike was 37" and biggest smallie was 18". All these fish were caught trolling deep structure with shad raps in natural and silver patterns. I did catch around 5 eater sized walleyes and 8 pike vertical jigging, but I was pretty disappointed with these kinds of numbers for three days of nonstop fishing. I tried everything and it seemed like the fish were only biting in the later evenings before dark. I even tried trolling late at night in the shallows and the deep structure. Is this normal for these huge waters that I have been told are dynamite fishing??? I was extremely disappointed and confused as to what I did wrong. Monday morning I left right away and vouched to fish a different body of water and decided on elbow lake just east of Orr. Here I caught a few nice walleyes and some eater pike and also a nice smallie. Most were caught trolling deep again and a couple were caught vertically jigging lead heads and crawlers. Then I had the highlight of my trip.....I looked over and here is a wolf swimming across the lake!! I motored a little closer to it to get a picture and then backed off as I didn't want to stress the animal too much. As soon as he hit the shoreline, he took off up a rock wall and was gone. I don't know how in the heck he scaled that near vertical rock face, but he did with no problems whatsoever. That was one of the coolest things I have ever seen in the wild. I will post pictures of him swimming later, even though my picture isn't the best as I didn't want to get too close to him. Elbow is a very scenic and quiet lake too, it's worth checking out. The landing on the north end arm is out of the way down a bumpy forest service road though and has very limited parking. My small boat was fine for it though. If anyone can clue me in on what I did wrong, I'd appreciate it! The park ranger told me to get off Kab and go to Rainy as the numbers are there. He said that Kab has needed a slot limit for years and the populations have declined drastically in the past. Now that the slot has been put into place, hopefully the population will jump back up.

GoggleEye

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It sounds like you had an outstanding trip for fishing and scenery, although the latter is always good there. Fishing is tough this time of year everywhere, except maybe Canada. Walleyes are tough and fickle. I have had some outstanding trips, comparable to Canadian trips, and I have gone and gotten practically skunked. Thank God for smallmouth bass. Couple the "abnormal" weather they have had with pine fly/mayfly hatches, and it seems again that you did pretty well. Big system, tough to learn. Where did you stay? I assumed you camped. How was that? I am looking to do the same soon. Let me know what you thought.

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I read in the Mesabi Daily News that a 7lb smallie was caught out of elbow about a month ago.

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Which park ranger told you to get off of Kab?? I would like to know. Where you at the visitors center when you spoke to him.

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Ya, I was camping on Kab at one of the NPS sites on Round Bear Island. It is one of the sites closest to the Ash River Visitor Center and is a descent one for wind blockage and also has a bear proof food locker on it, so that is something nice about it. I had a critter of some sort trying to break into it late sunday night and it did it's job and kept it out. Pretty scary getting awakened by the sound of an animal trying to break open your food locker, you never know if it's a bear or just a raccoon (I was too scared to open my tent and see!). I would recommend most of the NPS sites, they are layed out pretty nice.

I don't know what ranger told me to go and fish Rainy if I wanted to catch larger numbers of fish, but he was an older gentleman and very skinny. He had a short beard and used a carved walking stick. I was at the Ash River Visitor's Center and he said he lives on Rainy and that the fishing is much better than on the kab. Maybe I'll give Rainy a shot next year....

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Thanks google

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googleeye, The description of the park ranger you speak of, I'm sure is a maintenance man for the visitor center, I know of no thin elderly park rangers.

I don't believe the gentleman had a clue what he was talking about. Kab has had a slot for nearly 8 years now the fishery is rebounding, and things this year have improved greatly. Rainy has had a slot for I believe 12 years, and often the numbers favor Rainy, especially in the mid summer. Rainy Lake is a huge body of water for the novice, and it is definitely big boat water.

Kab/Namakan are beautiful bodies of water, and fishing is usually on for one species or the other.

Follow posts on this site, educate yourself on fishing techniques for both shallow water and deep water,ie, lindy rig type backtrolling versus jig and minnow and etc. Normally something will work.

Good luck to you whatever your choice of lakes, all these border lakes are beautiful and all have some of their own chacteristics. guts

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Guts, he may have also been a volunteer guy??? I know a lot of parks have volunteer assistants as I am a parks manager for a living. He said that it was good that kab got it's slot limit and come to think of it, he may not have indicated when it got a slot limit. That may have been my mistake. He said he lives on Rainy, so I am sure he may be a little biased. I know Rainy is big boat water, but I have been out on Mille Lacs on some pretty windy days with my 14 footer and I have become very comfortable with that little boat in rough water. You just have to pay attention and use a little common sense. Of course, there is a limit where I have to pull off the water and call it a day, but I am comfortable trolling through white caps in that boat now and feel that I have learned how it maneuvers through the waves. Ya you get wet, but that's just fishing. I will probably try Rainy next year or even this year if I can swing it. New scenery is always nice and I would like to try Rainy. If I get blown off, I'll just find a sheltered bay or shoreline. Any areas of suggestion for Rainy in the fall??

GoggleEye

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Googleeye and Guts, I spoke with the Ash river visitors center and the gentleman from the river was a volunteer that usually works at the Rainy Lake visitors center. Problem should be solved.

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Dockboy, there never was a problem, I just don't like Kab and Nam ever getting shortchanged.

Goog, I think you will find Rainy to be an excellent fishery, and after you experience that lake maybe you will be biased towards Kab/Nam as well. For myself and many others, we cherish the beauty and tranquiliy of these lakes, that includes Rainy as well, I just like the uniqueness of Kab. With the present limits in place it is not that tough anymore to fill your bag on any of these lakes.

guts

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Dock, there was never a problem with the gentleman that told me to go to Rainy. He was actually very nice and was just trying to help me out as he could see I was somewhat disappointed with how I did for numbers for three days of fishing. I did catch some real nice sized fish, but the numbers of eaters just were not the best. All in all though, I had a great experience. Kab is gorgeous and actually the solitude was much better than on Nam. It seemed that everyone who came out of the ash river vis. center was heading right into nam. Why is that?? The one day I headed into nam and fished, I saw literally dozens of boats and didn't catch a single fish. I was puzzled. I headed back into Kab that evening and fished for a bit before dark and saw no boats and landed a nice 27 inch walleye! It was just weird to me....

GoggleEye

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Finally got some time to post a few pics if anyone is interested........ click for picture

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The wolf I saw swimming across elbow lake....... click for picture

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